Tag Archive for 'cram for exam'

Having trouble focusing while studying?

If you’re trying to cram for an exam or otherwise trying to get a lot of studying done or reviewing a lot of notes in a short period of time and losing focus, you might want to stare out the window – or even better, take a walk outside.

Seriously, if there are trees out there, it might just help.

According to Attention Restoration Theory (ART) people can concentrate better after spending time in nature, or even looking at scenes of nature. Natural environments abound with “soft fascinations” which a person can reflect upon in “effortless attention”, such as clouds moving across the sky, leaves rustling in a breeze or water bubbling over rocks in a stream. The theory was developed by Rachel and Stephen Kaplan in the 1980s in their book The experience of nature: A psychological perspective and has since been found by others to hold true in medical outcomes as well as intellectual task attention.

If you don’t have direct access to nature, researchers seem to agree that WATCHING VIDEOS might be the next best thing.

I did a quick YouTube search and found this video – I am sure some of you can find a better one that we can share… Please post the YouTube URL as a comment and I’ll publish the best ones!

The key is to envelop your visual sense in the experience…

You only need a few minutes of involuntary ‘effortless’ attention to then return to your task and have full concentration and focus.

Does Cramming Work?

Cramming – Don’t Do It!

Time can really get to you when you are trying to study. Many people wait until the last minute and they end up trying to cram all the information in within a few hours.

So, this brings up an important issue – DOES CRAMMING ACTUALLY WORK?

When people are preparing for a test or exam, often cramming will turn into a habit that is overused. Many students resort to cramming for a variety of reasons self-justifying our behaviour with the lie that we have busy schedule… Am I right?

In many cases, cramming can be RISKY, since it ends up CAUSING STRESS FOR NO GOOD REASON!

As such, you end up making your brain work even harder in a shorter period of time, than it would if you were doing routine study. If you cram on a frequent and regular basis, it can actually become a HEALTH RISK.

One of my engineering school classmates had to drop out because of study-related, stress-induced health problems thinking he could take some time off and come back – that didn’t happen. Once out of school, he ended up ‘taking it easy’ with a less ambitious crowd and well, the rest is history. Not only did he not get back to Engineering, he never stepped back into a university classroom.

When possible, you should definitely use other methods of studying – other than cramming.

Not sure where to find great ideas? Consider reading my revolutionary learning e-book “Get Better Grades with the Least Amount of Effort.” It offers a lot of helpful knowledge, proven study tips, techniques and strategies that can help you study more effectively and get better grades.

SO DOES CRAMMING EVER WORK?

When you are healthy, well rested and don’t have a lot of “other stresses” in your life, the brain may deal quite well with a bit of cramming that occurs in the last minutes or hours of study before an important exam or quiz.

However, in most cases, if it works at all, you usually only end up with GRADES THAT ARE AVERAGE, instead of the BEST GRADES you could achieve if you studied more effectively.

One of the main problems with cramming is that you never get a great grasp of all the information and the relationship groups of information may have with each other – those inter-relationships are usually what teachers put in the exam!

Cramming can also lead to CONFUSION. Sometimes it can make information you already know even more confusing. You’ll also find that it’s hard to put the facts in your long-term memory as you are probably dealing with FATIGUE and FRUSTRATION as well.

If you don’t want to put your mind through all this, then make sure you avoid cramming for your exams and is you DO cram, you use my strategies to make the best of it!

It doesn’t matter whether you are studying in high school, college or business. If you are looking for ways to study more effectively it’s well worth checking out my ebook “Get Better Grades with the Least Amount of Effort.”

Onward and upward!
Marc

P.S. If you have any personal experiences or feedback on cramming, post it here on the blog as a comment!